Can spiritual warfare (by saints or Satanists) be conducted by means of a photo? Can a person’s photo be an instrument for establishing psychic contact with that person? Intellectually speaking, No; but the experience of one Bible prophet reveals that it is possible to establish spiritual contact for good or evil through effigies or other symbolic representations of a people or a place.
“And now, son of man, take a large clay brick and set it down in front of you. Then draw a map of the city of Jerusalem on it. 2 Show the city under siege. Build a wall around it so no one can escape. Set up the enemy camp, and surround the city with siege ramps and battering rams. 3 Then take an iron griddle and place it between you and the city. Turn toward the city and demonstrate how harsh the siege WILL BE against Jerusalem. This will be a warning to the people of Israel”(Ezekiel 4:1-3, New Living Translation).
The New Living Translation describes the model as a map; the New International Version describes it as a drawing, and The Message Bible describes it as a picture. The prophet, far away in Babylon, was being called upon to engage in spiritual warfare against a city some five hundred and fifty miles away; he was going to establish ‘contact’ with that land and its people through a pictorial representation of them on a ‘canvass’ or ‘photo-paper’ of clay. The supervising Spirit informs the prophet that his faraway mimetic motions would “demonstrate how” it ultimately “will” actually turn out against those with whose picture or map he was doing the military divination. Dimensions of spiritual warfare, you would say.
If Ezekiel’s prophetic mimes were capable of making such potent statements over a distant people; if the solitary motions of that high priest could cast such powerful ‘spells’ on a land and a people, and bring about the mimed fate on the people of the targeted picture, then some dance steps are not mere mimes. They could be a prophetic proclamation for good or evil, and your doorsteps should not be the stage for their voices when they are out to mime the evil that “will be” coming against you or against your land.
I remember fifty-five years ago: the Sokoto Caliphate staged a durbar (a mock battle), a mime, on the eve of Nigeria’s Independence, apparently in pre-celebration of the Independence. At that ‘show’ of a mock battle by those wise ‘prophets,’ the Islamic army of that Caliphate ‘defeated’ the colonizing British, in ‘triumph’ of which the British returned to the Sultan the Caliphate sceptre of office – the flag which had all the while been “carefully preserved in the West African Frontiers Force museum” after it had been captured from Sultan Mohammed Attahiru (I) in the July 1903 battle in which he had been killed; a flag “believed to be the [personal] standard of Shehu Usman Dan Fodio” the mystical patriarch of Northern Nigeria Islam (Hogben). The conceding of that symbol of authority by the departing colonial masters to that Caliphate in that mimed battle had fundamental spiritual implications on the destiny of the new nation and the caliphate throne of Sokoto. It were as if the new nation was handed over to or being subsumed under that Islamic stool. It had been merely a mime, but generations of intercessors have had to deal with the lingering implications of that symbolic battle one forgotten evening fifty-five years ago. Some ‘shows’ mean much more than the names they are called.
Hogben, S. J. and Kirk-Green, A.H.M. The Emirates of Northern Nigeria. London: Oxford University Press, 1966.
From The Preacher's diary,
October 15, 2015.